As TikTok continues to face elevated stress within the U.S. and the U.K., the corporate is signaling its dedication to fostering instructional content material on its app. The corporate introduced on Tuesday that it’s increasing its devoted STEM feed throughout Europe, beginning within the U.Ok. and Eire, after first launching it within the U.S. final 12 months.

The STEM feed will start to routinely seem alongside the “For You” and “Following” feeds for customers below the age of 18. Customers above the age of 18 can allow the STEM feed through the app’s “content material preferences” settings. The feed consists of English-speaking content material with auto-translate subtitles.

TikTok says that since launching the feed within the U.S. final 12 months, 33% of customers have the STEM feed enabled and a 3rd of teenagers go to the STEM feed each week. The app has seen a 24% development in STEM-related content material within the U.S. for the reason that feed launched. Over the previous three years, nearly 15 million STEM-related movies have been printed on the app globally.

The corporate is increasing its partnerships with Common Sense Networks and Poynter to evaluate the entire content material showing on the STEM feed. Frequent Sense Networks will look at the content material to make sure it’s acceptable for the STEM feed, whereas Poynter will assess the reliability of the data. Content material that doesn’t go each of those checkpoints won’t be eligible for the STEM feed.

The launch of the STEM feed comes as TikTok has been criticized for exhibiting dangerous content material to youngsters and teenagers, with rights groups alleging that the app makes use of addictive design practices to maintain customers engaged for so long as attainable.

In February, the European Union stated it was investigating whether TikTok has breached the Digital Companies Act, which incorporates guidelines for retaining customers protected on-line. The fee is investigating whether or not the app is doing sufficient to cease minors from discovering inappropriate content material and figuring out whether or not its design decisions stimulate addictive conduct.

With in the present day’s announcement, TikTok is looking for to additional current itself as an academic hub for the hundreds of thousands of younger customers on its app as a strategy to counter criticisms from lawmakers world wide. The corporate has already used the STEM feed to counter claims that it’s dangerous for younger customers, as TikTok CEO Shou Chew touted the feed whereas testifying in two separate U.S. congressional hearings, one in March 2023 and one in January 2024.